The New England Patriots were one man short on their active roster when Saturday started and they needed to bring a 53rd player on before their game against the Buffalo Bills Sunday. So on Saturday afternoon, the team did just that.
The Patriots have just announced that running back Tyler Gaffney has been promoted from the practice squad to the 53-man active roster. He’ll join the team in Buffalo and fill out the roster for Sunday’s game.
Gaffney, who turned 25 earlier this year, was originally a sixth-round draft pick of the Carolina Panthers in 2014. Before that he was a standout at the University of Stanford, rushing for 1,709 yards on 330 attempts and 21 rushing touchdowns in 2013. As a result, he was expected to compete for a roster spot in Carolina as a rookie.
Unfortunately for Gaffney, he suffered a torn lateral meniscus early during his first training camp and was waived by the Panthers because of the injury. Shortly afterward the Patriots claimed the young running back and placed him on injured reserve. He would spend his entire rookie season there, winning Super Bowl XLIX with them as a member of IR.
Gaffney has struggled with injuries since, bouncing back and forth between the IR and the New England practice squad the last two seasons. As a result, if he dresses on Sunday, it will be the first time of his career.
The Patriots (6-1) travel to Buffalo on Sunday to play the Bills (4-3) with kickoff set for 1:00 PM EST.